Recent indicators suggest that growth of economic activity has slowed from its strong pace in the third quarter.been expanding at a solid pace. Job gains have moderated since earlier in theearly last year but remain strong, and the unemployment rate has remained low. Inflation has eased over the past year but remains elevated.

The U.S. banking system is sound and resilient. Tighter financial and credit conditions for householdsCommittee seeks to achieve maximum employment and inflation at the rate of 2 percent over the longer run. The Committee judges that the risks to achieving its employment and businessesinflation goals are likely to weigh onmoving into better balance. The economic activity, hiring,outlook is uncertain, and inflation. The extent of these effects remains uncertain. Thethe Committee remains highly attentive to inflation risks.

The Committee seeks to achieve maximum employment and inflation at the rate of 2 percent over the longer run. InIn support of theseits goals, the Committee decided to maintain the target range for thefor the federal funds rate at 5-1/4 toto 5-1/2 percent. The Committee will continue to assess additional information and its implications for monetary policy. In determining the extent ofconsidering any additional policy firming that may be appropriate to return inflationadjustments to 2 percent over time, the Committeethe target range for the federal funds rate, the Committee will take into accountcarefully assess incoming data, the evolving outlook, and the cumulative tighteningbalance of monetary policy,risks. The Committee does not expect it will be appropriate to reduce the lags with which monetary policy affects economic activity and inflation, and economic and financial range until it has gained greater confidence that inflation is moving sustainably toward 2 percent. In addition, the Committee will continue reducing its holdings of Treasury securities and agency debt and agency mortgage-backed securities, as described in its previously announced plans. The Committee is strongly committed to returning inflation to its 2 percent objective.

In assessing the appropriate stance of monetary policy, the Committee will continue to monitor the implications of incoming information for the economic outlook. The Committee would be prepared to adjust the stance of monetary policy as appropriate if risks emerge that could impede the attainment of the Committee’s goals. The Committee’s assessments will take into account a wide range of information, including readings on labor market conditions, inflation pressures and inflation expectations, and financial and international developments.